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Microsoft Highlights Xbox Adaptive Controller in Its Super Bowl LIII Commercial

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Watching Super Bowl commercials is half the fun for many Americans tuning in. Some are funny, some make you cry and chances are, there’s at least one Clydesdale horse. This year, Microsoft is using its Super Bowl spot to highlight the importance of accessibility and inclusion of people with disabilities who also like to game.

The commercial features multiple kid gamers with disabilities using the Xbox Adaptive Controller. At the end of the commercial, Microsoft displays the message, “When everybody plays, we all win.”

Microsoft launched the Xbox Adaptive Controller in fall 2018. Instead of being a handheld device, the large controller can rest in someone’s lap, on a table or the floor, depending on the needs of each gamer. It features two large buttons and a D-pad with multiple ports where gamers can attach a joystick or other adaptive devices.

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In an extended version of the commercial available online, the kids featured talk about their love of gaming but also the difficulties of using controllers because most require you to use both hands at once. One of the kids featured, Owen, was also in a holiday commercial for the controller.

Microsoft worked with people with disabilities, the Cerebral Palsy Foundation and other organizations to make the controller as accessible as possible. Disabled gamers were also able to test the product to give feedback on the playability.

“Now the Xbox Adaptive Controller is here, maybe we can fully acknowledge that the biggest issue faced by people with disabilities hasn’t been a lack of desire, or ability, or motivation – it’s been a lack of access,” Richard Ellenson, CEO of the Cerebral Palsy Foundation, wrote in a piece for The Mighty about playing video games with his son.

You can watch the commercial during the Super Bowl LIII on Feb 3 on CBS. 

Photo via YouTube

Originally published: January 31, 2019
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